All provinces in Canada have benzene regulations. In general the regulatory requirements do not vary significantly from province to province. Some of our clients do have signs posted in areas where benzene may be present. It is our duty to practice due-diligence by familiarize ourselves with benzene awareness signage. Work activities and sites needs to be assessed for benzene exposure risks, on an on-going basis.
Benzene exposure control is regulated in Alberta by the Occupational Health and Safety Act and Code, 2009 Part 4 of the Code is where benzene exposure legislation is located. Talk to your site safety representative about this subject if you need more help.
We are all familiar with conducting a hazard assessment before starting a job. But don’t forget to consider the invisible hazards. Benzene is a hazard!
Benzene is a possible hazard on all work sites. We need to ensure we are all following Benzene code of practice that outlines how to protect yourself from benzene exposure.
Health monitoring requirements, written work procedures, as required, training requirements when working with benzene, documentation requirements and testing requirement when applicable.
Legislation exposure limits come in a variety of forms: Time-weighted Average (TWA): over 8 hours is 0.5, 10 hours TWA is 0.35, 12 hours TWA is 0.25, 15-minute short Term Exposure Level (STEL) is 2.5 over.
Remember that 8-hours Exposure Limit needs to be adjusted for extended work shift to account for longer exposure and less recovery time away from exposure.
Saskatchewan requires that workplace benzene concentrations are maintained as reasonably practicable.
Remember to ALWAYS KEEP YOUR EXPOSURE TO BENZENE, AND OTHER CANCER-CAUSING MATERIALS, AS LOW AS POSSIBLE!
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